Hunstanton school on special measures is continuing to improve, according to latest Ofsted inspection

Smithdon High School has made satisfactory progress

A West Norfolk school which was put on special measures following an Ofsted report last year is continuing to make 'satisfactory' progress according to the latest report.

A recent two-day visit to Smithdon High, in Hunstanton, saw inspectors conclude that the school was continuing to make improvements in key areas.

'This was an extremely encouraging and very useful visit. Ofsted recognised the hard work which has taken place and the resulting progress and improvements. Areas which we already believe require further development were underlined by Ofsted.

'We are delighted to have the accuracy and appropriateness of our work underlined,' said head teacher Jonathan Goodchild.


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Smithdon posted record exam results last year with 47pc of students achieved A*-C grades in GCSE. But it was deemed to be failing in key areas by inspectors and was put on special measures in September.

Mr Goodchild said recruiting staff continued to be a problem, as it was for many schools in the area, and the lack of schools in Norfolk with 'outstanding' teaching standards also meant Smithdon was not able to form a partnership with such a school.

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'The nearest schools with an outstanding teaching element are in Hertfordshire or North Lincolnshire, so it's not easy to enter into partnership and have teachers going into those schools,' he said.

The most recent report said teaching was found to be inadequate in 'roughly one in five lessons, which aligns with the school's own analysis.'

It also said that literacy teach must be further developed but acknowledged behaviour had improved as had attendance.

Mr Goodchild said steps had been taken and the school was working with teachers who 'may be finding it challenging'.

'Leaders are pursuing the correct agenda to improve teaching,' says the report.

Mr Goodchild added that Ofsted had: 'Significantly raised the bar in recent months with respect to the standards expected in our schools. I firmly believe that Smithdon High School now has the capacity to meet these new and more exacting standards and be categorised as good within a year.'

In a letter to parents Mr Goodchild said he would be happy to meet them to discuss the report at 6.30pm on Tuesday.

The next inspection, as part of the process, is due in October and Mr Goodchild said he was hopeful that the school would be out of special measures early next year.

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